Spain national team boss Luis Enrique has, on Monday evening, responded to suggestions that he could soon swap La Roja for the Premier League, by taking up the managerial reins at Manchester United.
Enrique, of course, has been named as one of a short list of candidates currently under consideration to take his place on the bench at Old Trafford ahead of next season.
This comes with interim Red Devils manager Ralf Rangnick primed to call time on his spell in the hotseat in the summer.
A whole host of tacticians, at one point or another, have therefore been named as potential replacements, albeit with recent reports having pointed towards the list of those under consideration on the part of the United brass as being narrowed to four leading options.
Those in question? Mauricio Pochettino, Erik ten Hag, Julen Lopetegui and the aforementioned Luis Enrique.
It has even been suggested that the Manchester giants could push their appointment process back to the beginning of 2023, if it means Enrique’s potential arrival on the back of Spain’s endeavours at the Qatar World Cup.
‣ No meetings with Ralf Rangnick over consultancy role.
‣ Not expected to be “very hands-on”
‣ Tuchel “media talk not reality”
‣ Four-man shortlist with a split over Pochettino/Ten Hag [greater guarantee vs exciting, popular choice]https://t.co/UXiyOyFqWD
— Melissa Reddy (@MelissaReddy_) March 21, 2022
Speaking in a press conference on Monday ahead of his side’s upcoming friendly meeting with Iceland, it therefore came as little surprise when the subject of his future, and more specifically links with the post at Old Trafford, were put to Enrique by the press.
The ex-Barcelona tactician, though, was quick to reiterate his commitment to La Roja’s cause, albeit whilst providing a glimmer of hope to those hopeful of seeing him land on the red half of Manchester in 2023:
“I will be in Qatar with Spain because I have given my word and there is nothing that makes me more excited than representing my country in the World Cup. Later, we’ll see.”
He went on to add:
“And even more so with this national team and with this federation. I can say it louder, but not more clearly. I’m where I want to be.”
— Man United News (@ManUtdMEN) March 28, 2022
Enrique’s comments regarding his future come as Spain begin to ramp up preparations ahead of the fast-approaching World Cup later this year.
Though only sitting 7th in the FIFA world rankings at present, La Roja will likely be viewed by many as something of a dark horse to go all the way in the Qatar showpiece.
This comes with a fresh crop of groundbreaking talent currently coming to the fore in the country, including the likes of Barcelona trio Ansu Fati, Pedri and Gavi.
Add to this the impressive account of themselves put forth by the Spanish in both the European Championships and Nations League in 2021, and a fresh era of Roja dominance could yet be on the cards over the years ahead.
Former Manchester United boss warns Erik Ten Hag to choose ‘an actual football club’ over the Old Trafford hotseat
This article was edited by Ben Browning.